The Jungle Book

Rudyard Kipling

Illustrated by Edward J. Detmold and Maurice Detmold

This thrilling adventure about a boy learning to survive in the wild continues to hold the world’s imagination. Enchanting tales and poems on the lives and customs of jungle creatures are brought vividly to life with beautiful illustrations by Maurice and Edward J. Detmold.

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‘He shall live to run with the Pack and to hunt with the Pack; and in the end, look you, hunter of little naked cubs – frog-eater – fish-killer – he shall hunt thee!’

One of the most famous children’s stories of all time, The Jungle Book tells of the ‘man-cub’ Mowgli, who flees the cowardly, lame tiger Shere Khan and is rescued by the Seeonee Wolf Pack and raised with them. The wolves are initially reluctant to take him in, but Baloo the Bear and Bagheera the Black Panther vouch for him, and offer to teach him the Law of the Jungle.

Production details

Bound in cloth blocked with a design by Francis Button

Set in Plantin

192 pages

Frontispiece and 16 colour illustrations

Plain slipcase

9½˝ × 6¼˝

A thrilling adventure about a boy learning to survive in the wild

First published in 1893–4, The Jungle Book has never lost its hold on the world’s imagination. It has been adapted for stage and screen, including the 1967 Disney animated film. A thrilling adventure about a boy learning to survive in the wild, it is also suffused with Kipling’s respect and affection for the natural world, and his imaginative portrayal of its complex rules and customs. He wrote that he put in the tales nearly everything he ‘knew or heard or dreamed about the Indian jungle’. Many of the names of the animals – Akela, Baloo, Shere Khan – come from the Hindi, as do many of the Jungle terms, like the word for rabies: ‘We call it hydrophobia, but they call it dewanee – the madness – and run.’

As well as the Mowgli stories, The Jungle Book also contains poems and tales such as ‘Rikki-Tikki-Tavi’, the story of a mongoose who defends an English family from a snake, and ‘The White Seal’, the enchanting coming-of-age story of a young seal in the Bering Sea. This Folio Society edition contains the 1908 illustrations by Maurice and Edward J. Detmold, two artists of the golden age of illustration. They capture all Kipling’s immortal creations: the gentle, lazy Baloo; the Bandur-Log monkeys among the ruins; and Kala Nag, the great elephant.

About Rudyard Kipling

Rudyard Kipling was born in Bombay in 1865. He began writing poems and stories as a teenager. In 1892 he married Carrie Balestier, and it was at her family home in Vermont that he began to write Captains Courageous and The Jungle Book. They moved to England in 1896. Eleven years later, Kipling became the youngest, and the first English, writer to be awarded the Nobel Prize in Literature. He died in 1936 and was buried in Poets’ Corner, Westminster Abbey.


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